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The Road
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The Road

Author: Canada's National Observer

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In Ontario, a battle is brewing over a remote mining region, about 450 kilometres north of Thunder Bay. The outcome could forever change the face of northern Ontario — and possibly the planet.

Harry Wabasse’s home in Webequie First Nation is near the Ring of Fire — a 5,000-square-kilometre mineral deposit rich with the metals needed to build clean technologies. For years, the provincial government has been trying to build a road to the region and open the Ring of Fire up to mining.

A road could improve life in Webequie First Nation, and help the nation pursue economic opportunities. But development will affect the homelands of other First Nations — and not all of them agree with the plan.

Then, there's the environmental risks. Peatlands biologist Lorna Harris says building roads and a mine in the Ring of Fire could be disastrous. The region is home to the second-largest terrestrial carbon sink in the world — a massive expanse of wetlands that cool the planet by absorbing carbon.

This is the story of the years-long battle over the fate of northern Ontario.

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6 Episodes
The Road

The Road


Harry Wabasse's home in Webequie First Nation is about 70 kilometres from Ontario’s Ring of Fire mining region. A nearby mine and a road to the region could change his life forever. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
Boom and Bust

Boom and Bust


In the peatlands that wrap around Hudson Bay, Neil Novak makes a discovery that will change the fate of northern Ontario and the nations that call the region their homelands. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
The Breathing Lands

The Breathing Lands


When she learns mining companies have set their sights on the Hudson Bay lowlands, Lorna Harris raises the alarm — the region is home to the planet's second-largest terrestrial carbon sink. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.



Doug Ford's government has promised to mine the Ring of Fire, with or without the free, prior and informed consent of all Treaty Nine First Nations. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.



As members of some Treaty Nine First Nations take a stand against mining, Kate Kempton is preparing for court — to challenge who makes decisions about land use in the north. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
A firefighter’s wife and a corporate lawyer in different parts of the U.S. get pulled into solving separate mysteries. Something was making cows die and deer hemorrhage to death in West Virginia. That same something could also be giving firefighters cancer — all over the country.When the lawyer and the firefighter’s wife met, they found out they were working on the same mystery.The mystery was caused by a human-made chemical that environmental regulators should have known about but didn’t. A chemical that is said to be so toxic, it is unclear if any contact with it is safe.The chemical was created by a corporate giant, and then another corporate giant began using it to provide the world with so-called revolutionary products. Products that come with a very steep price.This is a fascinating story of two people unravelling a ball of yarn that would reveal the poisoning of the world.Listen to The Poison Detectives on Apple, Spotify or wherever you get your podcasts. Hosted on Acast. See for more information.
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